Three o'Clock, Ottawa Time
At three in the afternoon the bells of the Ottawa carillon cease their wild play in the Victory Tower. For an hour or so they have sent hymns, anthems, and old-time airs rolling down the valley of the river. Now they turn to the serious business of sounding the hour, obedient to the moon-faced clock above them.
Three o'clock and Canadian democracy goes to work. Three o'clock and the last cabinet minister (having missed his lunch, as usual) hurries over from the East Block with a worried look. Three o'clock and the Speaker of the Commons, in threecornered hat, flowing robe and silk knee breeches, parades in dismal procession down the marble corridors with his clerks, his sergeant-at-arms, gold mace on shoulder. Three o'clock and Mr. King, the prime minister, his battered red-leather brief case and its awful secrets clutched under his arm, trots into the House with a cautious, bobbing gait, as if he were walking on eggs.
Three o'clock, the witching hour of Ottawa, and the chamber of gray stone and carved oak is hushed. The Speaker on his richly fretted throne awaits the government's word and the long lines of members at their desks lean forward expectantly. Three o'clock, question time in the House of Commons, when the people, through their representatives, may ask the government anything and generally get an answer.
Today, perhaps, the prime minister, fitting his be-ribboned